Exterior view of the History Centre

Stories from the Strongrooms

In this series of short video talks, Hull History Centre staff explore some of the stories we've found in our collections. Subscribe to our YouTube channel to make sure you never miss a new video!

Looking for more? See all our stories from 2021 and 2022.

International Voluntary Service for Peace: the early years

In this episode of Stories from the Strongrooms, find out how (and perhaps more importantly, why) one small voluntary organisation shifted an 80,000-ton spoil heap in Shropshire in the cause of international peace.

Founded in 1931 as the British branch of Service Civil International, IVSP’s principles were “deeds not words” and “pick and shovel peacemaking”. Their records are held at the History Centre and are currently being catalogued.

Unlocking the Treasures at Hull's Local Studies Library: Special Collections

In this episode of Stories from the Strongrooms, why not take a whistle-stop tour of some of the items in the newly catalogued Special Collections now able to view at the Hull History Centre.

For Those in Peril on the Sea: Maritime Missionaries in Hull

In this two-part episode of Stories from the Strongrooms we take a look at maritime missionary activity in Hull during the 19th and 20th centuries, and we highlight the surviving archive of the Mission to Seafarers.

To find out more, download the Mission to Seafarers catalogue (PDF, 5MB), or discover all our maritime collections in our Fishing and Maritime History research guide.

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Hull and its Charters: Part 2

In this episode of our Stories from the Strongrooms we continue our look at the development of Hull though some of our iconic Charters, carrying the story on from the 16th to the 20th centuries.


Robert Greenwood Tarran: "The Man Who Is Hull"

Welcome to the latest in our Stories from the Strongrooms. Join me as I take you on a whirlwind tour through the life of one of Hull’s “most dynamic and colourful citizens”: Robert Greenwood Tarran. A true rags-to-riches affair, we’ll begin with his early life and how he built up his business empire, only to almost lose it all when he went head-to-head with the law.

A member of Hull City Council, Sheriff of Hull and the city’s Chief Air Raid Warden during the Second World War, Robert Greenwood Tarran was also involved in numerous organisations and President and Vice-president to many local societies. His interests were wide-ranging and his energy for pursuing them was extraordinary.


Saltburn to Skegness: East Coast Resorts in The Claude William Jamson Photographic Archive

In this month’s edition of our Stories from the Strongrooms series we take a trip back in time to our favourite East Coast resorts in the 1920s! All the photographs in this video are from the Claude William Jamson Photographic Archive (reference: U DX336) which is held by Hull University Archives at the Hull History Centre. These amazing photographs provide a fascinating glimpse into the past, showcasing the sights and attractions that have made these resorts so beloved. If you’d like to know more about the Jamson collection and explore the other places the family photographed, you can view the catalogue.

Want more 1920s views? See our earlier Story from the Strongrooms looking at the Jamson photographs of Hull in the 1920s.


Myton: A Short History

With work progressing on the A63, in particular the Mytongate and the area between the Humber Estuary and Anlaby Road, we’ve taken the opportunity to explore this area of Myton’s history, which spans a thousand years. All images and information contained within this talk are taken from our collections held here at the Hull History Centre.


Hull and its Charters: Part I

In this episode of our Stories from the Strongrooms we look at the development of Hull from the 13th to the 15th centuries though some of our most iconic documents – the Charters.